Ben’s Kitchen @ Publika
Many eating escapades revolve around the food, and seldom did people remember the importance of the excellence or services, the interior, or the ambience of the restaurant. All these indirectly contribute to the dining experience in whole and it is really important to pick and locate a restaurant at the right place. Ben’s Kitchen made a brilliant decision opening in Publika Mont Kiara. Some months back, the place might have been a little dead but now it can never be any livelier than it is.
Trust me when I say this. The period when I have to be around the showroom was dreadfully dead and dull back then. Now, Publika is a very artistic, pleasant and friendly place to hang out. Ben’s contemporary designs are amazingly comfortable and cozy to hang around. And that applies to both indoor and outdoor dining.
The food are fair and palatable, they offer an array of variety from western to Asian, from steaks to light snacks and bites, and from individual meals to something strictly for sharing only. I was really intrigue by their Asian menu at first, so I tried their Nasi Ulam and some starter Chicken Vegetable soup which I thought was a little pricey. Selling at RM 14.90, the bowl of soup was rather bland to me despite the scores of assorted vegetables in it. Served with grated parmesan crust and a slice of toast garlic bread, the parmesan clearly spoiled everything. It was probably prepared and stocked till there is a order in the kitchen. I am guessing because the crust wasn’t fresh at all and the lousy oil used prominently allows a bad flavour roaming for as long as it lasted in your mouth.
Good thing the Nasi Ulam make it up to the disappointment from the chicken vegetable soup.
However, this RM 25.90’s big plate of rice with a huge chicken thigh rendang, and several other dishes is a definite and strictly for sharing only. Served with half of my favourite salted egg and lekor, the entire combination of everything on the plate is explicitly ambrosial.
If Asian menu doesn’t excite you, then do take a look at the rest of what’s offered in Ben’s. They offer a simple yet delightful diversity of dishes.
So far, the asian menu is what I really like and this other dish that I love is the Curry Laksa which is not cheap for a dish you can easily get by the street or in any hawker centers. Selling at RM 24.90, the noodles are presented very nicely in a huge bowl making eating very easy and delightful. I thought it could use a little bit more of those cucumbers. It wasn’t too spicy and the sambal is served separately so for those who don’t fancy curry laksa to be over spicy then this one is creamily gentle.
I also tried the Pesto Chicken Sandwich which also sells at RM 25.90 for some really thick slice of sandwich. The bread was toasted and a whole slice of chicken breast was the main ingredient of this sandwich. I’m not too sure about the selection of method used to prep this dish, of which I thought the sandwich was really dry and bland. The grilled chicken was dry and hard, and the bread is not any better as well. The pesto sauce must either be really expensive, or the probably already ran low on that day. I didn’t enjoy the sandwich at all, but I do enjoy the sides.
This tiny salad leaves that’s served with the sandwich was appetizingly delicious. The slightly sourish plum sauce from the dressing compliments the mix nuts tossed on the salad.
While the Fisherman’s catch(RM 25.90) is serve at the right portion the coleslaw made a great add on to the otherwise dull combination of fish burger. The fillet is great, amazingly breaded to have the stunning texture on the outside whilst keeping the fish juicy on the inside.
The Fish and Chips(RM 25.90) also stunningly showed off the juicy fish fillet, this tempura coated fish fillet is also as great and tasted quite similar to the Fisherman’s Catch, minus the extra carbs from the fluffy bun.
Their desserts are quite extensively charming and the variety is so wide I decided to publish one entry just for their deserts so look out for that on my Facebook page. For now, we went with the amazing Sundae macadamia cheese cake, selling at RM 11.90. It was really good and what makes it perfect is the vanilla sundae.
With the crunch from the richly coated with caramel macademia nuts and the pieces of cheesecakes chunks in it, the sweetness of the dessert is toned with the cool vanilla sundae. Ice freezes the taste bud hence balancing the sweetness of this dessert. (This explains why melted ice creams are sweeter)
Approaching night time, this place becomes really happening when the bar opens. And this is the time when the place would be almost full and the dining or hanging out under those stars is a great offer for leisure. When seated under the starry night, dining experience instantly transform to another mood which is a lot steadier and more settled. Almost like you just want to savour and slowly enjoy your food.
Lastly, if the tiny little ice from the Sundae macadamia cheese cake isn’t sufficient to fulfill the ice cream appetite, then go on ahead to the other end at the B.I.G Ben’s Independent Grocer. Go for the chocolate flavour. Unless you loathe chocolate as flavour, then anyone would happily love this one.
The Ben’s is located at :
Lot 37A & 37B, Level G2, Publika, Solaris Dutamas,
No. 1, Jalan Dutamas 1,
50480 Kuala Lumpur.
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